Happy Friday! This week in the YA Author Club we’re all chatting about our experience with Barnes & Noble. I had a bit of trouble putting into words how I felt about this topic, so I snuck over to the blogs of my fellow club members, Bryna Butler and T. R. Graves, and scoped out their responses to this week’s question: What has Barnes & Noble ever done for you? Reading through their responses I am finally able to put my thoughts into words.
Nothing. I suppose that’s only one word. Allow me to elaborate. When I first published A Light in the Darkness, I was thrilled to see my book listed on Barnes and Noble’s website. To me, that was the pinnacle of success – having your book listed at Barnes and Noble. I live just down the street from our local B&N store and I have many a time walked past their large Nook displays. It was easy for me to dream of all the Nook sales that would soon be pouring in now that my own book was available for their high-end device. Then, a week went by and then a month. No sales. It has now been six months and I have sold a grand total of two books on Barnes and Noble’s site. TWO!!
Ahem. Where was I? Oh yeah! Disappointed. I was deeply disappointed. That is not to say that my book hasn’t sold. That would be different. If my books weren’t selling I would think “maybe I’m not such a great writer after all.” But that is not the case. I have had some success at Amazon and it seems to be growing, increasing momentum with each passing month and each new title I place out there in the market. No, this is a problem with Barnes and Noble and how they do business. You see, Amazon makes it easy for everyone to buy, sell, interact, and enjoy ebooks. They have multiple ways to encourage us as writers and you as readers to know each other, to share with our friends, and to recommend new writers to one another. On my Amazon author page you can even see a snippet of my blog or host a discussion about my work. I can even add a calendar of events showing where I’ll be for book signings or author talks. It’s remarkable and yet so very simple as though Amazon brought us together. “Author, meet reader. Reader, here is the author you were searching for. Say hello. Chat. Buy a book or two. Tell a friend. We’ll be right here when you need us.”
Oh wait. This was about Barnes and Noble. Well, you can see that I’m clearly not impressed with them. So, why are my books still listed with B&N for Nook? Well, remember that little discussion about KDP Select? The gist of it is this: I want my books to be available to as many readers as possible. I am willing to lose out on a few dollars here or there in commissions in order to be certain that the reader who is searching for my book can find it when and where she needs it and be able to enjoy it on her (or his) device. If I can’t place my book in their hands, then it seems to me that writing it was a bit pointless (not to mention the hundreds of other hoops I’ve jumped through to get it published.) So far my books are available for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, iTunes, and in print on Amazon. (You can find them here.) Sony will be next, I think. If there is a platform where you would like to see my books, please let me know. I’m doing my best to get into your hands. I promise.
And if you love Nook and buy a lot through Barnes and Noble, please let me know that, too. I appreciate hearing from all of you!